Album Reviews

SSS: This and Not That [Album Review]


Up until earlier this year, you may have heard Sam Smith, a.k.a. SSS, as the percussionist for the once amazing, no debunked, Portland based group No Go Know — A band that defied all acts of normalcy, and created some of the finest spaced out garage rock ever made. But, as is the fate of so many brilliant acts in history, they are done. Fortunately for us, Smith’s solo project is a brand spanking new reminder of the group that rattled our ear drums and hearts at the same time. This and Not That, SSS’s latest album, is a nice batch of experimental goodness.

Smith is a man that dabbles in the acoustic estranged like a mad scientist with beakers of methamphetamine. Seemingly using whatever instrument he can find in front of him at any particular moment in time, tracks like “My Monster Claws Are in Yr Parlour” and “The Art of Rotting” are only slight nods to the old days of NGK. Sam has created and entirely new atmosphere surrounding himself that he was once known for. And shouldn’t this really be a goal for any act? It’s always impressive to see an artistic mastermind throw himself into the void of the unknown, and see what comes through the proverbial tunnel when through? If it always worked as well as this album, everyone should be doing just that.

SSS is an experimental project that is purely fascinating. There is so much happening through This and Not That, that the inclusion of vocals would almost seem obtuse and might throw the entire rhythm off. There aren’t many cheap thrills out there in comparison to the personal exploration of one man and is home 4 track recorder, expressing and developing his own psychosis and experimental state of being. This a great work of art that is more than just a bland offshoot of times past. This is what happens when the soul must move out of the comfort zone, and begin to show itself in a new, and more incandescent light. Well played Mr. Smith.

Download: “My Monster Claws Are In Yr Parlour” by SSS
[audio:100803-sss-my-monster-claws-are-in-yr-parlour.mp3|titles=My Monster Claws Are In Yr Parlour|artists=SSS]

Download: “The Art Of Rotting” by SSS
[audio:100803-sss-art-of-rotting.mp3|titles=The Art Of Rotting|artists=SSS]


[CD, 2010]

1. New Freeland
2. Shoshoshonosha
3. The Art of Rotting
4. Life As And End/Life As A Means
5. What Will The Crash Look Like?
6. My Monster Claws Are In Yr Parlour
7. Simply Because They Are
8. 999

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